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HTPC News Roundup 2017 Wk 33: Roku channel crackdown, YouTube live TV expansion, GoT leak

written by Moe Long August 18, 2017

Welcome to the htpcBeginner HTPC News Roundup 2017 Wk 33! This week saw Roku clamp down on third-party streams, “Game of Thrones” leaked possibly by HBO Spain, an expansion to YouTube's live TV service. Read on for the latest in HTPC news and updates!

htpcBeginner Recap

In case you missed them, here is a recap of all our interesting articles published last week:

HTPC News Around the Web

Roku is warning users that ‘Non-Certified Channels' are Not to be trusted

Roku legal Kodi streaming box

Roku Ultra HD

Massively popular open-source media center software option Kodi witnessed a crackdown on its third-party addons. While many addons offer legitimate streaming, others provide illicitly streamed content. It's important to remember though that Kodi itself is completely legal. Now, Roku joins the efforts to squelch pirate streams. Roku users may install third-party channels. But upon installing these, Roku now pops up a message of “WARNING! THIS IS A NON-CERTIFIED CHANNEL.”

Furthermore, Roku explains that it may remove channels at any time. Roku remains one of the most popular streaming devices available. It's among the top Plex client devices and serves as a Kodi box as well through a clever streaming trick. The piracy narrative keeps changing. While downloading via torrents and Usenet services persists in thriving, pirate streams are more popular than ever. However, it's a space drawing increasing attention.

YouTube TV's live TV service is available in half of all US homes

Premium streaming services such as PlayStation Vue, Sling TV, and DirecTV Now have benefited cord cutters. Streaming video giant YouTube launched its live TV offering, and as Engadget reports, YouTube live TV plans to further expand its service. Upon its launch in April 2017, YouTube live TV was limited to a handful of metropolitan markets. In July 2017, it tacked on 11 markets. An additional 14 markets have been announced. As such, YouTUbe live TV is available in over 50% of US households. That's major news for the streaming space. Unlike cable or satellite, streaming providers such as YouTube TV are growing in number and broadening their markets, which yields greater choice to the end user.

Best Plex Client Devices:
  1. NVIDIA SHIELD TV Pro Home Media Server - $199.99 editors pick
  2. Amazon Fire TV Streaming Media Player - $89.99
  3. Roku Premiere+ 4K UHD - $83.99
  4. CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3 Complete Starter Kit - $69.99
  5. Xbox One 500 GB Console - $264.99

Google Home and Chromecast vs. Amazon Echo and Fire TV: Which is the best hands-free TV experience?

Automation and connectivity prevail as smart devices keep invading the home. While smart home tech such as lighting and security gadgets are the most prominent examples, the home theatre PC (HTPC) space connects with smart homes as well. Notably, hands-free TV is an excellent example of the HTPC/smart home intersection. Tech Hive presents a fantastic head-to-head of the Google Home, Chromecast, Amazon Echo, and Fire TV. Surprisingly, Google and Amazon offerings come out about even. Automation and smart home features are the next stage of HTPC evolution.

Kodi Premier League streams blocked leaving confused users watching blank screens

In a hilariously-titled piece, Independent reveals that the Premier League has upped its efforts to squash out pirate streams. The Premier League is poised to continue targeting host streamers through working with Internet service providers (ISP). This follows an earlier piracy lawsuit targeting many addons, and banning the sale of “fully loaded” Kodi boxes.

Game of Thrones episode “S07E06” leaks online early

Lately, “Game of Thrones” pirates posed a great threat to the series by pirating the script. Now, “Game of Thrones” gets another episode leaked. Although, this round it appears it's partly owing to an error with HBO Spain. Days before its official premiere, GoT season 7, episode 6, leaked online. It's unclear how the episode leaked, but it appears that HBO Spain may have inadvertently made the episode public. This, in turn, led to mass pirating of the episode.

Did you find any interesting news stories or projects from around the HTPC space? Share them with us in the comments section below!

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